From classics like Aladdin and The Lion King to the contemporaries such as Frozen and Moana, it's undeniable how Disney animated films have successfully made their marks on the public's consciousness. In fact, decades since Disney released its very first full-length animated feature in 1963, most of its films – old and new alike – remain to have a special place in the memories of many.
Today, as the entertainment giant paves its way towards achieving a century of excellence, many fans cannot help but wonder which among their timeless animated films sat on top of the movie hierarchy. Sure, while it may be hard to rank each film according to their contents, distinguishing them based on their earnings is another thing.
To let you know which among the most famous Disney animated movies generated the most profit, here is a list that names the top 10 highest-grossing films. Check out the list below to see which of your favorites earned the most!
Gross earnings: $807 million
Although a newcomer on the list, Coco has proven itself to be one of the most spectacular and unforgettable Disney films of all time. Launched in 2017, the film follows the story of Miguel, an aspiring musician who wants to break free from his family’s generations-old ban on music. Desperate to pursue his passion and prove his talent, Miguel suddenly finds himself in the Land of the Dead to unlock the secret of his family’s history.
Thoughtful, fun, and captivating, Coco comes as another engaging and touching quest narrative that includes a series of entertaining musical numbers and tear-jerking discoveries. With its moving storyline, packed with rich visual pleasures, it is no wonder that the movie managed to score $807 million internationally at the box office.
9. Inside Out
Gross earnings: $857 million
Another young star on our list,Inside Out, comes as a unique animated film that centers on individuality, adolescence, and family.
Unlike any other film, this 2015 3D computer-animated comedy-drama is set inside the head of an eleven-year-old named Riley, as she tries to cope up with sudden changes in her life. In the story, her five core emotions – Fear, Anger, Joy, Disgust, and Sadness – are all confronted with the struggles and hassles of having to adjust to a new life and trying their best to maintain a healthy and stable mental condition for Riley.
Given the film’s relatable content and interesting storyline, it managed to secure a total of $857 million internationally at the box office.
8. Finding Nemo
Gross earnings: $940 million
Launched in 2003, Finding Nemo is a memorable and moving animated film that relays a sweet father-and-son tale. In the story, an overly protective clownfish named Marlin, along with a friendly, but forgetful, Pacific regal blue tang named Dory set off on a comedic and heartfelt journey. They are trying to retrieve Marlin’s son, Nemo, who ended up being thrown into a fish tank within a dentist’s office.
The funny, gripping, and unforgettable film allows you to take a quick dip into the world of underwater creatures and discover a secret world that is once unknown to you.
7. The Lion King (1994)
Gross earnings: $968 million
While Finding Nemo takes you into the underwater world, The Lion King is your ultimate portal for the savannah.
Placing none other than the kingly lions as its main protagonists, this classic Disney film follows the story of a young lion cub as he paves his way in creating his own royal destiny on the plains of Africa.
Touching, captivating, and unforgettable, The Lion King comes as one of the most popular and adored Disney films to be ever introduced on the big screen. In fact, its success has become so big it continues to be the only movie produced before the year 2000 that remains to be among the highest-grossing animated films ever.
Gross earnings: $1.023 billion
Laying out the first billion-dollar mark on our list, Zootopia comes as another contemporary Disney-animated film that had managed to win the heart of many. Set in a world of anthropomorphic animals, the film follows the adventures of an unlikely pair: a rabbit police officer and a red fox con artist, as they try to uncover the mystery behind a conspiracy.
Produced and released by Walt Disney Pictures in 2016, this 3D computer-animated comedy is the ultimate comic-relief. It offers a bunch of interesting characters and a thoughtful, inclusive message for people of all ages.
5. Finding Dory
Gross earnings: $1.029 billion
With Finding Nemo‘s massive fanbase, it is no wonder that its sequel, Finding Dory, was wildly successful as well.
Produced by Pixar Animation Studios and released by Walt Disney Pictures,Finding Dory is a fascinating and poignant film that serves as a sequel to the 2003 success. However, while the first installment focuses on Marlin and his search for the missing Nemo, Finding Dory switches its focus to the friendly-but-forgetful Pacific regal blue tang Dory, as she sets off on an adventure in search of her long-lost parents.
Beautiful, lively, and heartfelt, Finding Dory is one of the top-earning films for Disney of all time.
4. Toy Story 3
Gross earnings: $1.066 billion
While all Toy Story movies are unforgettable and beautiful in their own regard, no one can deny that Toy Story 3 remains to be the best among them. Recognized to be the first-ever animated movie to make over a billion dollars during its time of release, the film follows the adventures of Woody and Buzz Lightyear, along with the rest of the toys. In this film, they try to find their way home after accidentally being donated to a children’s center.
Fun, thrilling, and tear-jerking, Toy Story 3 raised the standards for animated films during its release with its memorable storyline and whopping $1.066 billion in profit.
3. The Incredibles 2
Gross earnings: $1.242 billion
Released more than a decade after the success of its first installment, The Incredibles 2 proved that the film is worth the long wait by delivering as much action, joy, and laughs as the original. Made to continue where the first film left off, the movie follows the Incredible family as they take on a new mission while dealing with the stress that comes with a sudden change in family roles.
Overall, the film managed to secure a total of $1.242 billion, making it a great success.
Gross earnings: $1.276 billion
From its karaoke-worthy musical numbers to its captivating storyline to the lovable characters, there are tons of things that make Frozen one of the most phenomenal animated films of the decade.
In the story, the newly-crowned queen has a big secret – she has the power to turn anything into ice, often uncontrollably. When a series of events led to the public’s revelation of this top-secret power and the town is trapped in an infinite winter, it is up to her sister to follow after her and put things back in order again.
Cool, memorable, and sweet, Frozen managed to hit a whopping $1,276 billion in the box office.
Despite being entirely computer-generated, the film has managed to remain faithful to the original movie released in 1994 and even included a few of the biggest stars in Hollywood, such as Donald Glover, Seth Rogen, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Alfre Woodard, Billy Eichner, John Kani, John Oliver, and Beyoncé.
To date, the film’s more than $1.6 billion profit worldwide has made it the highest-grossing animated film, the highest-grossing PG-rated film, and the seventh highest-earning film of all-time.
Which among these 10 top-grossing films astounded you the most? Don’t hesitate to re-watch these shows and reminisce about the pleasure these films brought you during your early childhood.
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